30 December 2008

Buying Habits of Different Generations

Generation Gap

My project over the winter holiday is to write an article about the buying habits of the different generations (Gen X, Baby-Boomers, etc). By the way - a big THANKS to all of you who participated in the survey earlier this month and forwarded it to your friends. I had nearly 275 responses!

To be honest, I took this writing assignment because I think our company's fevered pursuit of the 25-and-under demo is misguided - but I need hard data to prove my theory.
The survey was critical to the success of the article or it would have been a focus group of one. I'll disclose some of the findings in a later post (I'm still digging through it all) but if you have any additional thoughts on this topic, I hope you'll consider posting a comment below.

The company's rationale is: the Gen Y / Millenials are the largest consumer group in modern history. Our company must pursue them or lose them. While I agree that companies should be catering to this demographic, I don't think it's the right demographic for my company.

Our sport is sustained by people who purchase equipment, take trips, etc. This means a significant financial investment - vacations that are upwards of $1,000 per person and a set of equipment that ranges from $800 - $1,800.

From 19-25 I didn't have this kind of money: I bartered movie passes to get free oil changes for godsakes. It wasn't until my late 20's that I had any disposable income to speak of - so if we're going to target younger people, shouldn't it be college grads with a few years work experience under their belts?

The counter argument is, "the college kid can talk his/her parents into footing the bill for the gear and vacations." I'm not sure that's realistic unless you have the parents' buy-in to begin with (in other words - someone in the family already participates in our sport). Personally I could never have talked Mom into forking over for something like this. Helping me out with a car was one thing - it allowed me to have a job. She would not have seen the value of scuba diving lessons.

So is it still all about the baby boomers? Are they the cash cow? I'm not really sure. I think about other things boomers like (golf, taking cruises) and I don't see them bringing the younger generation along on those activities. Maybe it would be the same for diving.

What about Generation X? Often derided as "pessimistic" and "too small of a population" by marketers - maybe it's time to give a crap about the slacker generation. Hey, we invented Facebook doesn't that count for something?

Lastly, I'm having a hard time assigning "crunk" to Gen X or the Digital Generation (aka Millenials). If you have a sec, please vote in my poll.

22 December 2008

Best of 2008 Mix

Here are my top musical discoveries of 2008. Not all these songs came out in 2008, but the majority of them did. If you are interested in this mix, I exported it to iTunes so you can buy it (see below).

  1. Sing Again CHRIS WALLA (check out the video featuring PDX)
  2. Killing Machine HOW I BECAME THE BOMB (great lyrics)
  3. This Is My Life FIREWATER (punk rock voice with world music)
  4. Lost In the Light THE HEAVENLY STATES (good driving song)
  5. Daydream Vacation (Boom Bip Remix) HEAD LIKE A KITE (dreamy electronica)
  6. Burnout Babies SYBRIS (gritty, chick-fronted rock)
  7. A Tribe Called Rocco TEAM GINA (lesbian rappers)
  8. Release SHE KEEPS BEES (if you like PJ Harvey)
  9. Gilt Complex SONS AND DAUGHTERS (catchy, no-holds barred pop-punk)
  10. Fuji MINUIT (if you wish Bjork would make another Post)
  11. The Rip PORTISHEAD (it's fucking Portishead, what more do you want?)
  12. Woman of Cain PALODINE (raw, frank lyrics)
  13. Hairy Candy TOBACCO (sunny, weird, electronic)
  14. Great DJ THE TING TINGS (catchy . . . maybe too catchy)
  15. Code Monkey JONATHAN COULTON (best lyrics of the year)
  16. Liz the Hot Receptionist JESUS H CHRIST & THE FOUR HORNSMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE (cute song but the rest of the album is "eh")
  17. Old Old Fashioned FRIGHTENED RABBIT (Scottish. Cute).
  18. Once And Never Again THE LONG BLONDES (think British Sleater-Kinney)
  19. A & E GOLDFRAPP (beautiful like a summer's day)
  20. Kids MGMT (if you like Time to Pretend, you'll love Kids)
  21. I'm Not Gonna Teach Your Boyfriend How to Dance With You BLACK KIDS (that's right, dammit).

If you want to buy these songs, visit iTunes for the iMix of TheMadHapa's Best of 2008 . The only song I couldn't put in the iMix is, unfortunately, Goldfrapp's A&E.

If you're wondering, "Where's Vampire Weekend, MIA and Santogold are:

. . . they appeared on last year's mix. Thanks to my myriad savvy new music sources. You know who you are!

12 December 2008

iPod Poem

How to: write a poem with your iPod

Put your iPod or iTunes on shuffle. The first line of the first 20 songs is your poem, the first line of the 21st is the title.

Thanks to Will at Shark Fin Hat for this idea! For the list of songs I used, click "Read more."

One Evening as the Sun Went Down and the Jungle Fire was Burning

I've never cared for authority, never felt part of the majority.
By myself alone at home feelin' blue.
Eyes boring a way through me.
You've got a nerve to be askin' a favor

Right about now, what's up, we're gonna start this right. Puerto Rico! Puerto Rico!

I had no choice but to hear you.
Might do you harm hangin around this farm.
Come in alone, you'll love to let go.
Won't you please let me go?

Mott the Hoople and the Game of Life. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

My opinion could change today. I'm responsible anyway.
I give protection to people I don't like.
He shakes his dick rattle, spittle on his bib.
Chiquitita tell me what's wrong?

I have been listening such an ancient song.
Where do we go from here?
I think I'll go home and mull this over before I cram it down my throat
Now that it's time, now that the hour hand has landed at the end.
Hey Man, leave me alone.

Poem title: Big Rock Candy Mountain: Harry McClintock

This is my life: Firewater
Wonder, Wonder: Enino Morricone
This Fire: Franz Ferdinand
The Rat: The Walkmen
Culo: Pitbull / Sean Paul / Little John
Head Over Feet: Alanis Morrisette
Out on this Farm: Amy Ray
Come in Alone: My Bloody Valentine
Age of Consent: New Order
Man on the Moon: REM
On Fire: Sebadoh
Kojak: Minny Pops
Plump: Hole
Chiquitita: ABBA
In This City: Enon
The Bends: Radiohead
Ode to the Banana Kind: Tori Amos
Caring is Creepy: The Shins
Fairest of the Seasons: Nico
Suffragette City: David Bowie

If you liked this game try soundtrack to your life (using iPod).

09 December 2008

Chris Dan Owens Video Shine - He's Bringing 80's Back

This video . . . is really something. Apparently it’s some guy’s vanity project: some guy, who wishes he was a rock star in the 80’s. Click on the image below to play the video.

If the chicks in this music video had feathered hair, this would be a forgotten video gem from the 1980's – but it was made in 2008! You've got fair maidens, enchantresses, sword fighting, an ice palace, and alligator . . . at one point I thought for sure Robocop was going to ride in on a unicorn.


END OF POST (there is no "Read more . . .")

03 December 2008

Please take my survey

I'm writing an article about the buying habits of Gen Y, Gen X and Baby Boomers. Rather than pull the information out of my ass like I usually do, I decided to go empirical and shit.

The survey takes 10 minutes at most. If you have a sec to take my survey I'd really appreciate it. I need at least 200 responses to have a statistically valid survey.

If the link above doesn't work, please copy and paste this link into your browser:

Thanks again for your time. I'll be writing the article over Christmas break and it will be published in March 2009.